Keywords International Reviews | Glassdoor

Keywords International Reviews

Updated February 16, 2017
47 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

2.9
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Keywords International CEO Andrew Day
Andrew Day
15 Ratings

47 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Good place to start in terms of experience and learning about work environment and linguistic culture (in 10 reviews)

  • Multifaceted work environment, great people (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • No job security, as projects may suddenly end or suspend (in 10 reviews)

  • project based contract, low salary, (in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Localization Tester"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Keywords International full-time

    Pros

    Great company to work. Amazing co-workers.

    Cons

    No job security. Don't know when they are going to call you again


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Only if you don't need to pay any bills."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Keywords International part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Easy interview, nice coworkers, good salary for such simple job, nice workspace.
    Flexible brakes and shifts ( nobody cares if you running late for 30-40 minutes)

    Cons

    You never know will you get job in next month, or not.

    Be ready to stay at home UNPAID for a few months until you get another few months project. (if you lucky)

    Advice to Management

    Find more contracts and give peoples more stable job


  3. "meh..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA

    I worked at Keywords International (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great people to work with, very interesting projects

    Cons

    no job security is provided


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (2)

    "LQA Video Game Tester"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Keywords International (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - Diverse international environment.
    - Decent pay for the requirements.
    - Nice office space.

    Let's be honest. The pay is really decent for what you have to do. I don't see why so may people here are complaining. This is not rocket science. All you have to do is being precise and pay attention to mistakes and errors. The work hours are normal and they even "force' you to take a break every two hours.
    Plus the diversity of the people working in this place is amazing.

    Cons

    - High [sometimes annoying] security standards.
    - No flexible work hours [would be nice to avoid the traffic]

    Advice to Management

    In the introduction, point out the amazing things about this place. Not that you can get fired if you touch that blinds.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Tester QA"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Orca card , coffee , clean place

    Cons

    Boring work ever , lonnnng hours

    Advice to Management

    do some work


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Tester/translator"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Employees from many cultures and countries.

    Cons

    Short project and not much work to do

    Advice to Management

    Not much skills needed


  8. Helpful (8)

    "Trump should be the Boss"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA

    Pros

    -Good/Fun Summers job for students
    -Job on the side for adults leaving still with parents or for a house wife
    -First time experience in Microsoft
    -Sometimes cool games to test
    -Meet other foreigners from lots of diferent places

    Cons

    -Management is incompetent & they lie to you at interview about the type of job it is. This is not a year round job. You will be home MONTHS (not days and weeks like they say) before they call you back in, if they even call. They will not fire you because you could sue them, so they just keep lying and says that they will tell you if something comes when there's no accountability and you're home without pay.

    -Dead end job. Sometime they say to be politically correct that the loyal, hardworking people will get hired fulltime or promoted. This rarely happened in the long time I was there (not even had ONE work review) and most of the smart, experienced people get jobs on better Microsoft teams or they go to Amazon (pays way more). Then you lose all of the best comrades.

    -Testers are paid by language and not skill/experience. If you speak a more rare language, like Dutch or from Norway, you can ask for $20+ an hour but then they will just cut you after the project's over because they don't want to keep you around for that much. Spanish will pay a lot less but you do the same amount of work or more.

    -People who pay there own rent can't afford to stay at this company. You will soon be forced to the streets looking for another job if you start here anyway. Why bother?? Just find a better job (and the main manager will tell this direct to you if you make a complain...he is a jerk who does not like the responsibility being the boss He secretly wants a demotion cuz' the company is quite bad)

    -Worst Boss of your career life ever guaranteed. Unprofessional, tries to do cover up, seams cool sometime, but he generally just hates every person, major stress issues. No honest work evaluation given, only criticism of his staff behind closed doors. Donald Trump would be better!!

    Advice to Management

    Change your policy to match labor law of the USA. Maybe we are foreigners in your employ but sooner than later, you are gonna get sued (discrimination, illegal hirings) and Microsoft probably won't like this! Maybe you need an American to do the job.


  9. Helpful (11)

    "LQA"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Keywords International full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Nice coworkers, met great people, work is ok. Orca card and Microsoft site.

    Cons

    It's embarrassing the lack of professionalism in regards to some project leads not treating people with respect, being arrogant and playing favorites. Trying to give feedbacks to the leads is the worst mistake you can make. Some people would take 2.5 hour lunch and come back like nothing happened including testers and leads. Upper management is fine.

    Advice to Management

    It should be a good start to treat people right who actually make it happen, it doesn't have to be great, just decent and respectfully.


  10. Helpful (16)

    "Redmond/Seattle: Avoid unless absolutely desperate"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Localization Test Lead in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Localization Test Lead in Redmond, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Meeting nice people from all over the world, and learning about their cultures and lives can be a lot of fun. Great coworkers with varied backgrounds and across all ages.

    If you are interested in games, you will get to see/try new titles before the public.

    Cons

    The work at Keywords is project based, meaning they will call you in to work X number of days or weeks. In between projects, you will be at home without compensation. When interviewing, they may tell you to expect 2-4 weeks of downtime per year, but this is very far from the truth. There is NO guarantee that you will have work, and when they do call you in, projects tend to shift and change with no warning. This means that you might show up to work, expecting a few weeks of income, only to be told that the project has been delayed. As projects get close to deadline, aforementioned poor planning manifests itself as last minute overtime requests, often on weekends.

    Management is the main problem at Keywords. The top manager has often stated to me and others that his philosophy is: "I don't care if people hate me, because no one is irreplaceable."

    This "Leadership Style" lays the foundation for how employees are treated, creating an often toxic atmosphere of intimidation and fear. The rest of the management team is typically overwhelmed and therefore mostly disinterested in the well-being of testers (to them, the priority is making Keywords look good to the client, not the employees). Don't expect anyone from management to be on top of communication, and don't expect to be thanked for your work.

    Compensation is low for the work and what management expects from you in terms of availability and "loyalty". They pay people based on a combination of how rare the languages are, and how desperate they are for filling that seat. If your language is common (such as Spanish), you will be making an hourly rate in the teens. If your language is harder to find, you can squeeze them for much more. If you do apply to work there, it's important that you know your value and ask for a matching hourly rate - because you are not likely to get a raise after you start.

    While I was there, there were several examples of people who asked for a raise and were made to wait months for an answer (I waited 5 months). If you do get a raise, you risk being moved to the bottom of the list - meaning if there is another tester covering the same language for less, they will call them in before you when there is work to do. Not surprisingly, this sometimes creates jealousy and mistrust between testers.

    Outside of the pre-scheduled breaks, you are expected to quietly sit and work even if there is nothing to do. This happens regularly due to poor planning, but you are still supposed to give the appearance of working on something. Again, this is so it looks good to the client. There will be days, where all you do is sit and look at a spreadsheet and wait for an email to tick in.

    There is a high turnover of people, as many leave as soon as they find something elsewhere. While there, I offered numerous suggestions for how this could be improved, but was eventually told that it was not a priority, just the nature of the business.

    If you are looking for a career path, you can try to work your way from tester to test lead. That's as far as it goes, though. Be prepared to go above and beyond to make yourself stick out from the others who are trying to do the same thing. I did exactly that, taking initiatives and developing tools and processes for the benefit of everyone, on my own accord, some of which ended up becoming department standards. This sort of thing is expected from those who seek advancement. However, even if you do succeed in getting a promotion, know that a lead position comes with a ton more responsibility and expectation, but your compensation will stay pretty much the same as when you were testing.

    There is no HR available, should you have a need for that.

    Advice to Management

    I would advise that corporate replace the person currently running the show with someone more qualified, give better support to the remaining management team, and start treating employees as people rather than assets.


  11. Helpful (5)

    "LQA Tester"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Lqa Tester in Redmond, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Keywords International full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Not much skill involved, other than knowing your language at expert level.
    Great teammates, with good comradely.
    Paid holidays, sick days, and vacation.

    Cons

    Top management sets itself in adversity to the employees.
    Very little opportunity for advancement.
    No job security, as projects may suddenly end or suspend.

    Advice to Management

    Get someone in who has better HR and people skills, than current top management at the local level.



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